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NEW TAPE LABEL HAS 9 LIVES ...and even more bands! Florida is a big-ass state. The panhandle is practically its own republic, as far removed culturally from Miami and the Keys as you can get. And then there’s that plastic tourist mecca in the middle. But there’s no reason the bands that troll all 447 miles of America’s wang shouldn’t feel more connected to one another – part of the same musical bloodstream that birthed artists as disparate as Iron & Wine, Hot Water Music, Torche and Less Than Jake. And there’s a new label, Spirit Cat, that is in the very business of connecting Florida bands, packaging them together on tours and releasing their music in compilations – on cassette tape, no less. “We liked this format because it still had the warmth and organic feel of vinyl,” says Spirit Cat founder Djem Barree, formerly of the Gainesville band Oh Fortuna. “It is also a lot cheaper. We also like it because we would be able to do every step of the process out of our home – making the master tape, dubbing and packaging is all done in my living room. With this comes a great feeling of pride.” Spirit Cat released its first tape, The Voyage of the Great Dogcraft, last November, featuring four exciting bands from the Gainesville and Tallahassee regions – including the college radio-ready dream-pop of Aircraft, which Paste recently called the No. 1 Band in Florida You Should Listen to Now. Some tapes are still on sale for $5 at spiritcat.bandcamp. com; you can also purchase the label’s newest compilation tape, which was released in January, as well as full-length cassettes of some of the label’s favorite Florida artists. “We aren’t blowing up the blog world, but that isn’t our goal,” Barree says. “We really want this to be a Florida thing. Since the bands are from Florida, we would like them to be recognized by listeners in Florida. We plan on a Spirit Cat tour coming to South Florida in the future.” Three tracks on this month’s PureHoney free download comp come courtesy of Spirit Cat. Bands include: Ex-Breathers, Ben Varian and Woset. ~ John Thomason

PUREHONEY 19  

FREE SOUND: DEAD GAZE,THE MEANEST BOYS , TEEPEE, CHILD BITE , ELVIS DEPRESSEDLY , WESTERN MEDICATION, BEN VARIAN, EX-BREATHERS, WOSET , FAL...

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